Congestion Pricing Panel Named

According to a press release from Mayor Bloomberg's office, the 17-member congestion pricing panel —3 appointees each from Bloomberg, Governor Spitzer, the City Council, Senate Majority Leader Joe Bruno, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, and one each from the Senate Minority Leader Malcolm Smith and the Assembly Minority Leader Jim Tedisco— breaks down as follows:

  • Mayor Bloomberg: Gene Russianoff from the New York Public Interest Research Group and the Straphangers Campaign, New York City Department of Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Kahn and Civil rights attorney and Executive Director of UPROSE Elizabeth Yeampierre.

  • Governor Spitzer: former First Deputy Mayor Marc Shaw, Port Authority Executive Director Anthony Shorris, and Metropolitan Transportation Commission Executive Director and CEO Elliot “Lee” Sander. Mr. Shaw will be nominated to be the head of the commission.

  • Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver: Assemblyman Herman “Denny” Farrell, Jr., Assemblyman Richard L. Brodsky, and Assemblywoman Vivian E. Cook.

  • Senator Bruno: New York City Central Labor Council President Gary LaBarbera, SUNY Chairman Thomas F. Egan and Nassau County Council Chamber of Commerce President Richard Bivone.

  • Senate Minority Leader Malcolm Smith appointed Counsel and Project Director of Arverne By the Sea, Gerard Romski.

  • Assembly Minority Leader Jim Tedisco appointed Environmental Defense New York Regional Director Andy Darrell.

  • City Council Speaker Christine Quinn has appointed Drum Major Institute Executive Director Andrea Batista Schlesinger, Greater Allen Cathedral CFO Edwin Reed and Partnership for New York City President and CEO Kathryn Wylde to the Commission.

    The mayor's office provided the following biographies for the commission members:

    Richard Bivone is the President of the Nassau Council of Chambers of Commerce and the President and Founder of RMB Drafting Services, the largest research/drafting/expediting firm on Long Island. Richard played a key role in forming the Nassau Business and Community and Planning Coalition (NBCPC), a unique partnership between the Nassau Council of Chambers of Commerce, the Nassau Village Officials Association, Vision Long Island, and environmental and civic groups. He is a retired member of the New York City Fire Department (FDNY).

    Assemblyman Richard L. Brodsky represents the 92nd Assembly District. Brodsky currently serves as Chairman of the Standing Committee on Corporations, Authorities and Commissions, which oversees the state’s public and private corporations. In addition to his Committee Chairmanship, Assemblyman Brodsky has also introduced a number of proposals to reform state government through constitutional change.

    Assemblywoman Vivian E. Cook began her civic role more than 30 years ago when the Kennedy Airport and airport expansion threatened her community. Cook, who represents the 32nd Assembly District, has been an activist for community improvement. Working tirelessly to secure funding for various building and reconstruction programs, Cook has helped develop community housing programs that provide residents with affordable homes. Assemblywoman Cook currently serves as Assistant Majority Leader.

    Andy Darrell is Director of the Living Cities program at Environmental Defense, focused on practical, market-based solutions for climate change and health in major cities. He also serves as New York Regional Director. He is a member of Mayor Bloomberg’s Sustainability Advisory Board, convened in 2006 to help create a new sustainability plan. Previously, he helped form two organizations instrumental in revitalizing abandoned New York City waterfronts. After law school, he worked at Davis Polk and Wardwell, an international law firm, and as a consultant on financing clean energy projects. He received a JD (Law Review) from the University of Virginia and a Master’s degree from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. He is a trustee of the Van Alen Institute, the New York League of Voters Conservation Voters Education Fund, and New York City’s International House.

    Thomas F. Egan was appointed Chairman of the State University of New York Board of Trustees on February 8, 1996, and a member and Vice Chairman on June 27, 1995. A lawyer and banker, he has spent over 30 years in the securities industry, with extensive experience in capital market finance. Mr. Egan is a managing director at Citigroup Global Markets in New York City. Previously, Mr. Egan was a principal in Langdon P. Cook & Company, Inc., for twelve years and a staff attorney with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for three years. Mr. Egan is the past chairman of the Foundation for the New York United Hospital Medical Center and active in civic affairs. He has also served as a member of the board of directors of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, a trustee of Marymount College, and member of the Port Chester Village Planning Commission.

    Assemblyman Herman “Denny” Farrell, Jr. was elected to the State Assembly in 1974 from a district that encompasses West Harlem, Washington Heights and Inwood. Farrell serves as chair of the Committee on Ways and Means and is a member of the Committee on Rules. Prior to his appointment to Ways and Means, Farrell was Chair of the Committee on Banks, where he successfully secured passage of the Omnibus Consumer Protection and Banking Legislation Act.

    Gary LaBarbera is the President of the New York City Central Labor Council and has nearly 25 years of progressive labor leadership with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, including currently serving as Joint Council 16 President, which represents over 100,000 members in the New York Metropolitan area. He also serves as a Vice President for the New York State AFL-CIO, the Long Island Federation of Labor AFL-CIO, and the New York State Building and Construction Trades Council.

    Edwin C. Reed is the Chief Financial Officer at the Greater Allen Cathedral of New York and has been serving in this capacity since 1995. He has previously served on the Board of Directors of the New York Bank from 2001 to 2003. The Allen organization provides services such as rehabilitating and building affordable housing, developing and managing 14 commercial stores, operating a community service center, and providing quality education for up to 500 students. Previously, Reverend Reed was the Executive Staff Director for Congressman Floyd Flake of New York. Reverend Reed has served as: Chairman, Jamaica Business Resource Center; Treasurer, Outreach Development Corporation; Vice Chairperson and Member of the Board of Directors, Hofstra University; Member of Wheelchair Charities; Co-Chairperson, New York Housing Conference; Member, Chase Community Advisory Board; Member, Federal Home Loan Bank of New York Affordable Housing Advisory Council; and Member, Allen Christian School, Allen Transportation, Allen Women's Resource Center and Allen Housing Development Corporations. Reverend Reed formerly served as Chairman of the Queens County Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission.

    Gerard Romski is a former partner at the law firm Ross and Cohen, LLP, he currently serves as Counsel and Project Executive for one of New York City's largest mixed-use development projects, Arverne by the Sea, incorporating more than 2,300 new housing units in Queens. A strong advocate for public transit investment, Mr. Romski has also served as the Assistant Division Chief in the Real Estate Litigation Division of the New York City Corporation Counsel's office where he represented the City in real estate matters.

    Gene Russianoff has been mass transit and government reform advocate for the New York Public Interest Research Group, a student-directed social change organization, since 1978. Mr. Russianoff is a staff attorney for NYPIRG's Straphangers Campaign. His efforts have helped to win unlimited-ride transit passes and free subway-to-bus transfers; increased transit service; creation of independent transit safety and management watchdog agencies; $53 billion in funds to rebuild the subway and bus system since 1982; and rider and labor representatives on the MTA Board of Directors. New York 1 News named Russianoff a “New Yorker of the Year” in 1997 for coalition work to win unlimited-ride Metro-cards. Russianoff is the author of more than 100 reports on transit service.

    Janette Sadik-Khan was appointed Commissioner of the New York City Department of Transportation by the Mayor in April. Prior to her appointment, she was a Senior Vice President of Parsons Brinckerhoff, a leading international engineering firm. Commissioner Sadik-Khan is nationally recognized for her expertise in innovative finance, public policy development and transportation issues - knowledge gained in over 15 years of experience at the federal, state and local level. Before joining Parsons Brinckerhoff, she was Deputy Administrator at the U.S. Department of Transportation. As Chief Financial Officer, she managed the agency's $4 billion annual capital construction budget and was responsible for developing an innovative finance program which provided localities with increased funding and regulatory flexibility. She also served as Director of the Office of Policy where she initiated the FTA’s Art in Transit program to expand federal funding for art and design in transit facilities and implemented new criteria to improve the ways in which the benefits of transit capital projects were quantified.

    Elliot “Lee” Sander, Executive Director and CEO of the MTA, has served as a Corporate Senior Vice President at DMJM Harris, a leading transportation engineering firm, and as Director of the Rudin Center for Transportation Policy and Management at the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service at New York University. Sander is also the founder and co-chairman of the Empire State Transportation Alliance, and he is a Commissioner on the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission. He graduated from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown.

    Andrea Batista Schlesinger has led the effort to turn the Drum Major Institute, originally founded by an advisor to Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. during the civil rights movement, into a progressive policy institute with national impact. Under her leadership as Executive Director, DMI has released several important policy papers to national audiences including: Middle Class 2004: How Congress Voted, People and Politics in America's Big Cities, and From Governance to Accountability: Building Relationships that Make Schools Work. She has worked in various capacities to promote educational equity and youth empowerment. She directed a national campaign to engage college students in the discussion on the future of Social Security for the Pew Charitable Trusts, and served as Director of Public Relations of Teach for America before working as the education advisor to Bronx Borough President Fernando Ferrer.

    Marc V. Shaw is Executive Vice President for Strategic Planning at Extell Development Company and is responsible for the overall strategic direction of the company. From 2002 to 2006, Mr. Shaw was the First Deputy Mayor and Deputy Mayor for Operations under Mayor Bloomberg. Prior to that he served as the Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. He also served as City Budget Director, Commissioner for the New York City Department of Finance, and Director of Finance for the New York City Council. Mr. Shaw also held a position with the New York State Senate Finance Committee. He has been an adjunct assistant professor of Public Services at the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Services at New York University, and is currently an adjunct professor at the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University.

    Anthony Ernest Shorris, Executive Director of the Port Authority, formerly served as the Director of Princeton University's Policy Research Institute at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and as Deputy Chancellor of the New York City Board of Education. He also has served as the First Deputy Executive Director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, as New York City's Commissioner of Finance, and Deputy Budget Director.

    Kathryn S. Wylde is President and CEO of the Partnership for New York City, a nonprofit organization of the city's business leaders, established by David Rockefeller in 1979. The Partnership is dedicated to maintaining New York City as a center of world commerce, finance and innovation. Its public policy focus is on issues in the areas of education, infrastructure and the economy.
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    The Partnership’s economic development arm is the New York City Investment Fund. Wylde served as founding President and CEO of this $110 million civic fund, which was established in 1996 under the leadership of Henry R. Kravis. Wylde was also founding President and CEO of the Housing Partnership Development Corporation, serving from 1982 to 1996. In that capacity, she was instrumental in creation of a number of pioneering initiatives in affordable housing at the local, state and national levels. An internationally known expert in housing, economic development and urban policy, Wylde serves on a number of boards and advisory groups, including the New York State Commission to Modernize the Regulation of Financial Services, the Mayor's Sustainability Advisory Board, the Special Commission on the Future of NYS Courts, Independent Judicial Election Qualification Commission for the First Judicial District, NYC Economic Development Corporation, Research Partnership for New York City Schools, NYC Leadership Academy, Governors Island Advisory Council, the Manhattan Institute and the Biomedical Research Alliance of New York.

    Elizabeth C. Yeampierre, a Puerto Rican civil rights attorney born and raised in New York City is Executive Director of UPROSE, Brooklyn’s oldest Latino community based organization. In 1996, Elizabeth helped shift UPROSE’s mission to organizing, advocacy and developing intergenerational indigenous leadership through activism. In reaching these goals, UPROSE focuses on environmental, economic and social justice. Ms. Yeampierre is a co-founder of CURE (Communities United for Responsible Energy) and OWN (Organization of Waterfront Neighborhoods). Ms Yeampierre serves on Mayor Bloomberg’s Sustainability and Long Term Planning Advisory Board and the US EPA National Environmental Justice Advisory Council.


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